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The Sydney Symphony Orchestra with the Australian String Quartet

6 – 8 June 2024

In the Concert Hall

Sydney Symphony Orchestra

Classical Music

In a unique presentation, the superb Australian String Quartet will join the Sydney Symphony to perform the mesmerising Absolute Jest by American composer John Adams, a work that takes small fragments of Beethoven’s music and develops them into something new, and newly inspiring.

A mesmerising evolution of sound

Adams’ music is rhythmic, minimalist and utterly compelling. Focusing on small musical fragments that repeat and evolve, the work unfolds into a rich and deep experience.

Brilliantly incorporating amplified string quartet and orchestra, the intimate interplay of the quartet unfurls into a vast soundworld of a symphony orchestra.

Ravel and Schoenberg were both genius orchestrators, utilising every tone of every instrument to realise their respective visions. Ravel's tribute to French Baroque composer François Couperin takes a suite of courtly dances and transforms them into evocative, cinematic gems that are unmistakably Ravel's own.

Schoenberg's orchestration of Brahms' First Piano Quartet is a gorgeous example of a huge contemporary imagination building on an historic work. Schoenberg's ability to draw colour from an orchestra may, in this triumphant reimagining, even match that of Brahms himself.

Presented by Sydney Symphony Orchestra


RAVEL Le Tombeau de Couperin
JOHN ADAMS Absolute Jest
BRAHMS orch. SCHOENBERG Piano Quartet No.1

Artist information

Anja Bihlmaier conductor 
Australian String Quartet

Other information

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